All ODF fire protection districts are now in fire season. It's especially important in summer to avoid or be extra careful with any potential source of fire in wooded areas. Fire season means the end of most outdoor activities that are high risk for starting a fire, such as debris burning, campfires outside of designated areas, and using tracer ammunition and exploding targets.













Friday, May 9, 2014

Spring is the time to become wildfire-aware

This spring, please be mindful of the growing potential for wildfires and follow basic fire safety rules and precautions. The heaviest activity is in the summer, but fires occur all seasons of the year.

When it comes to preventing wildfires, there’s a lot at stake – lives, personal property, and the many values provided by Oregon’s forests. In 2013, three firefighters died battling Oregon wildfires. Timber losses totaled about $370 million, and the fires decimated key fish and wildlife habitats. Homes and outbuildings were destroyed as well.

Wildfires that occur in the wildland-urban interface often are started by human activity and then spread to the forest. Once underway a fire follows the fuel, whether it is trees or houses.

“Simple prevention strategies will make the strongest impact in keeping your home, family and community safe,” said Kristin Babbs, president of the Keep Oregon Green Association.

Spring is the perfect time, she said, to remove dead flammable vegetation and limb up trees around the backyard.

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Have a question/comment about this season's wildfire activity on the 16 million acres of private and public forestlands that the Oregon Dept. of Forestry protects from wildfire? Let us know. Please keep your remarks civil and free of profanity.

Comments and questions

The purpose of this blog is to provide breaking news about wildfire activity on the forestlands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry. We invite you to post questions or comments you have about current wildfires. Please keep your posts civil and free of profanity. You are also welcome to contact us by email at: information@odf.state.or.us.

Current wildfire info

Cool, wet weather in the winter of 2016-17 ended Oregon's long drought and left a thick snowpack at higher elevations which will take some time to melt. However, even in non-drought years Oregon's warm, dry summers create conditions that allow for fire to start and spread. In an average summer firefighters still see almost a thousand fires on lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry.



What we do

Protection jurisdiction

The Oregon Dept. of Forestry protects 16 million acres of private and public forestlands from wildfire. This includes all private forestlands in Oregon as well as state- and local government-owned forests, along with 2.8 million acres of federal Bureau of Land Management lands in the western part of the state. There are about 30.4 million total acres of forest in Oregon.



Fire suppression policy

The department fights fire aggressively, seeking to put out most fires at 10 acres or smaller. This approach minimizes damage to the timber resource and fish and wildlife habitat, and protects lives and property. It also saves money. While suppressing large fires can cost millions of dollars, economic and environmental damage from wildfires can be many times greater.




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About Me

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Oregon Dept. of Forestry's public information officers in Salem, Ore., maintain this blog. During the wildfire season, we spend much of our time reporting on fires and firefighting to news media and the public.